Shortages of personal protective equipment (PPE) — much of it sourced from Asia — has taught supply chain leaders some hard lessons during the pandemic. And now, some hospitals and health systems and their supply chain partners are banding together to source more PPE domestically.
Advocate Aurora Health and Banner Health are among 15 health systems nationwide who have partnered with Premier Inc. to acquire a minority stake in Prestige Ameritech, the largest domestic manufacturer of face masks, including N95 respirators and surgical masks. In addition to their equity investment, Aurora Health and Banner Health have pledged to buy a portion of Prestige’s masks that they use annually for up to six years.
The health systems hope that by investing more in domestic production, they will help create a more reliable supply chain.
The AHA’s 100 Million Masks Challenge has also been active in coordinating opportunities for manufacturers, the business community and individuals across the country to rapidly provide much-needed support and PPE for our nation’s health care workforce. The effort includes a number of complementary partnerships — all housed under the umbrella of the 100 Million Mask Challenge, giving individuals the opportunity to make direct financial donations, manufacturers and businesses the ability to donate PPE and numerous other resources to support our health care heroes during this crisis.
The AHA is hearing from many credible businesses that are able and want to assist in producing PPE. The Association for Health Care Resource & Materials Management is playing an important role by vetting nontraditional suppliers that are offering PPE supplies throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.